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Full text of "TheCompleteMemoirsOfGeorgeSherston"

roundings, I felt an impulse to dress and go out for a
walk. But Arras and the Somme were a long \vay off;
I couldn't walk there and didn't want to; but they
beckoned me with their bombardments and the reality
of the men who endured them. I wanted to be there
again for a few hours, because the trenches really
were more interesting than Lady Asterisk's rose-
garden. Seen from a distance, the War had a sombre
and unforgettable fascination for its bondsmen. I
would have liked to go and see what was happening,
and perhaps take part in some exciting little exploit.
I couldn't gainsay certain intense emotional experi-
ences which I'd lived through in France. But I also
wanted to be back at Nutwood Manor for break-
fast. ... Returning to my bed I switched on the yellow
shaded light. Yes; this was the Clematis Room, and
nothing could be less like the dug-out where I'd sat
a month ago talking about Sussex with Ralph
Wilmot. Through the discurtained window the sky
was deep nocturnal blue. I turned out the lamp, and
the windows became a patch of greyish white, with
tree-tops dark and still in the strange quietude before
dawn, I heard the cuckoo a long way off. Then a
blackbird went scolding along the garden.

I awoke to a cloudless Sabbath morning. After
breakfast Lady Asterisk led me into the garden and
talked very kindly for a few minutes.

"I am sure you have had a very trying time at the
front", she said, "but you must not allow yourself to
be worried by unpleasant memories. We want our
soldier-guests to forget the War while they are with
us."

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